Josephbukta, SW Spitsbergen

by phyllis on July 29, 2012

Josephbukta, SW Spitsbergen - don't trust this chart!

Back in 2002, during our 7-week cruise of the Svalbard archipelago, John and I poked the bow of Morgan’s Cloud into Josephbukta, Recherchefjorden. If I recall correctly, we were expecting some breeze so, when we found early on that the bottom contours didn’t conform to the chart, we didn’t carry on any further into the anchorage but steamed a few miles over to anchor in Bourbonhamna.

Unfortunately, it seems that the bottom has shifted even more than when we visited, as this summer John, a contributor to the Guide, went aground right in the center, where anchoring was reportedly possible in the early 1990s (which was the last report we had before we added “lumpy bottom” to the anchorage description in 2002). No damage was done, thank goodness, but a few uneasy hours spent on a slant are no fun, particularly that far away from assistance!

So, if you are interested in anchoring in Josephbukta, please take care, enter on a rising tide, and report anything you find to us so that we can pass it on to any future visitors.

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